Part 6: Rome

Monday 7/22 – Monday morning we left Florence and trained southward to our final destination on the Italian peninsula, Rome.  Our train pulled up to Termini Station in the early afternoon and from there we walked to Hotel Independienza.  Definitely a 1-2 star max “hotel” (I don’t understand why they can brand themselves as hotels if they are really more like hostels in nearly every aspect…), Hotel Independienza welcomed us with a nice receptionist and showed us to a seemingly nice, private 4-bed room and bathroom.  Whilst taking a quick siesta, we quickly came to the realization that when their website had said: “AC units available upon request,” in reality that meant the ancient fan on top of the dresser was available. I think it was approximately 85 degrees in our room, so that was fun to get ready in those conditions. Try putting on makeup when you can’t stop sweating.Continue reading “Part 6: Rome”

Part 5: Florence + Cinque Terre

Friday 7/ 19 – Where did we leave off? Well, we safely made our train from Venice to Florence! This particular train was operated by Trenitalia, and was the nicest train we had been on thus far.  Upon arriving in Florence, we only had a short walk to our hostel; I tried to make a withdrawal at an ATM but my dumb bankcard wouldn’t work.  After we had gotten settled in at the hotel, we ventured out to Ponte Vecchio, though we stopped in a random restaurant on the way there for a quick bite to eat.  Think unexpected sitting fees and overpriced raviolis.  From there, we walked up to Piazzale Michelangelo and watched the sunset over the best views of all of Florence.Continue reading “Part 5: Florence + Cinque Terre”

Part 4: Venice

7/18 – We managed to pull ourselves together in time to catch our train over to Venice.  Upon our arrival to the Santa Lucia Station, we initially attempted to direct ourselves towards the new hostel using the directions we’d grabbed from their website.  The only issue here was that the directions were from the mainland train station, not Santa Lucia.  So that was a lovely realization, that we had accidentally booked a hostel in mainland Venice (or what is actually Marghera) rather than in Venice proper.  Around this time with the afternoon heat beating down on us and the enveloping aroma that Venice radiates everywhere, we started joking about the hunger games again (only partially joking).  After our ten-minute cab over to Marghera, we checked into the 1-star Nuova Locanda Belvedere (which was home to a black cat, naturally).  In order to avoid passing out from hunger, we quickly went down to the nearby restaurant and inhaled a pasta lunch, followed up by a needed siesta. Continue reading “Part 4: Venice”

Part 3: Milan

7/16 – Well, we made it to Milan finally! Hello Italia.  Although several randies tried to claim their seats were in our little train cubicle, we indeed arrived in one piece to the train station in Milan that night.  From there we got a taxi to Minas Hostel… Minas had a really nice staff and we were pumped to have a private 4-person room and private bathroom! On the downside, Minas definitely exaggerated the “AC in the rooms” – it was quite steamy in our room so we kept the windows open despite the hoards of mosquitoes that quickly made themselves right at home in our bathroom.Continue reading “Part 3: Milan”

Part 2: Nice

NICE – 7/15  – Monday at the crack of dawn, we sleepily checked out of St. Christopher’s Inn and made our first of three trains Nice bound.  Definitely slept through the first train ride- Bastille Day wears a person out I tell ya!  Despite having the train route from hell, we did eventually arrive in Nice.  Without much frustration we navigated to our next hostel, Villa St. Exurey, which was not too far from the station.  This was a really good hostel- we had a large mixed room with like a dozen other Swiss girls.  They had a daily deal where you could get a bowl of pasta if you buy a 2.50 Euro beer, needless to say that was our dinner for that night. Continue reading “Part 2: Nice”

Backpacking Trip Part 1: Paris

PARIS – So Friday, July 12th came very quickly and of course Cass and I hadn’t packed for our three-week backpacking adventure until the day of so that was special!  In an unfortunately hung-over, humid, and hurried state we stuffed our supposedly TSA regulation backpacks with as much as we possibly could.  A few hours later, the backpacks were full and our temporary rooms at Petra’s were once again as empty as we had found them a month earlier.  We said our goodbyes to Petra and we were on our way! It’s quite possible that we sweated out nearly half of our bodies’ worth of water weight as we made our way over to the ISA office to leave our luggage there until our return to Barcelona. Continue reading “Backpacking Trip Part 1: Paris”

We <3 Tossaaaaaaa

After a seemingly endless hiatus, I am back on the blog grind people! It has been a little over three weeks since I last updated this bad boy and I am excited to share what we’ve seen, done, and survived over that time.  So I will now attempt to pick up where I left off in early July – towards the end of Cass and my initial stay in Barcelona, Petra and Montse invited us to join them on an overnight trip up to Tossa de Mar or Tossa for short. Continue reading “We ❤ Tossaaaaaaa”

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